Conde Nast finalizes $2B lease for 1 WTC

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Conde Nast finalized its lease of one million square feet of office space at 1 World Trade Center, guaranteeing the 1,776-foot tall tower an anchor tenant. According to the New York Times, Conde Nast’s annual rent for the 20th through 41st floors in the building will start in 2014 at a little more than $60 per square foot, about equal to what it currently pays at 4 Times Square. Over the course of the 25-year lease the publisher will pay the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, which owns the site, $2 billion. But the Port Authority offered several incentives — including agreeing to pay the rent between 2014 and 2019 on Conde Nast’s current lease, offering tax exemptions on interior furnishings, and promising $46 million in rent rebates over 17 years — to land the media giant. (The Times cited sources who said it would not be difficult for the Port Authority to find another tenant to pay even more for Conde Nast’s former space.) Moreover, the Port Authority had to ensure Conde Nast executives that its black cars, drivers and frequent guests could be prescreened to ensure expedited access to the otherwise heavily-secured building. Previous reports pegged the building to have verbal agreements for 85 percent of its space, but Carl Weisbrod, a former president of Lower Manhattan’s business improvement district, said this was the most important of the transactions. “What Conde Nast really does,” he said, “is certify downtown as a cool place to do business.” [NYT]

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